The Sapphires 2013 PG-13 CC

Amazon Instant Video

(224) IMDb 7/10
Available in HD
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In 1968, four gutsy Australian Aboriginal women become unlikely stars by singing for the troops in Vietnam with the help of an R&B-loving musician (Chris O'Dowd). Inspired by a true story.

Starring:
Tanika Lonesborough, Nioka Brennan
Runtime:
1 hour 38 minutes

Available to watch on supported devices.

The Sapphires

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Product Details

Genres Drama, Music, Musical, Comedy
Director Wayne Blair
Starring Tanika Lonesborough, Nioka Brennan
Supporting actors Lynette Narkle, Kylie Belling, Tammy Anderson, Miah Madden, Ava Jean Miller-Porter, Carlin Briggs, Gregory J. Fryer, Miranda Tapsell, Deborah Mailman, Jessica Mauboy, Koby Murray, Hunter Page-Lochard, Chris O'Dowd, Judith Lucy, Annette Hodgson, Tom Whitechurch, Shari Sebbens, Georgina Haig
Studio The Weinstein Company
MPAA rating PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Captions and subtitles English Details
Rental rights 48 hour viewing period. Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly and download to 2 locations Details
Format Amazon Instant Video (streaming online video and digital download)

Customer Reviews

Great story, lovely scenery, good acting, and the music is amazing.
P.L.
Everyone who's given this movie a bad review is just overly critical, and has seem to have forgotten that this movie was made to inspire and make you feel good.
Deborah Poole
As the girls journey through the war zone, they deal with long-standing family disputes, racism and also find romance.
Michael B. Druxman

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

34 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Shardajo on July 15, 2013
Format: Blu-ray
This "gem" of a film is a treasure that's been buried under shallow box-office movies.

"The Sapphires" is not a glitzy Hollywood romp romanticizing the late 1960s. Neither is it a raw shock-value film of the Vietnam crisis. What it is is a gritty story about the conflicts of race issues, betrayal, family conflict, and the loss of innocence. And while the film doesn't shy away from the themes of exploitation, sexuality and confusion, it also doesn't saturate the screen with images to meant to overwhelm the viewer.

The based-on-life story of four sister/cousins (Deborah Mailman, Jessica Mauboy, Shari Sebbens, Miranda Tapsell) who boldly belly-up to the auditions for entertainers for the Vietnam Troops is inspiring. The fights between the girls are fast, furious and leave you breathless. The manager (Chris O'Dawd) pushes back with worthwhile pressure. The family dynamics are complicated and real.

The story stays focussed on the issue of the girls and their struggles. The effects are subtle and lend to the story, not overtaking the visuals. The most refreshing part? The actors are not glammed up; they are diamonds-in-the-rough and it's the rough that makes them great. They don't look or sound like Barbie Commercials.

But wait! What about the music? If it's a film about a girl-band...

You won't be disappointed by the cast's ability to belt their pipes worthy of the big-screen. There are 16 songs from the era, including (but not limited to) "I Heard It Through The Grapevine," "What A Man," "Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch," "Soul Man," "Today I Started Loving You Again," and "In the Sweet Bye and Bye."

Going to add this film to my home collection. And I am picky with what goes into my home collection.
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Foles36 on August 7, 2013
Format: Blu-ray
Not much more I can contribute to the very shabby treatment the great girls who are the Sapphires receive when it comes to the U.S. dvd cover that previous reviewers haven't already touched on.
I really like Chris Dowd but he is NOT 'the movie' as the dvd cover would strongly infer. I think the cover dismisses the girls as mere 'bit players' or 'backing singers' which is not the case at all. BUY the movie and see why the cover is an injustice to who the girls are, what they achieved and why it's so disrespectful! In Australia we always think that everyone is entitled to a 'fair go' so how about changing that cover eh?
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By lagrandedame on July 26, 2013
Format: Amazon Instant Video Verified Purchase
I refuse to spoil this movie for you, because you should experience it yourself at every level -- and there are many. What I will say is that, if you love American soul music and you hate racism of any kind, you'll like this film. Inspired by a true story, three aboriginal sisters and a cousin set out on the journey of their lives accompanied by the aspiring group's white "Soul Brother" manager. Their "dream" is to sing for the U.S. troops in Vietnam during the war.

This movie is both heart-warming and heart-wrenching! Sometimes, you'll laugh and, sometimes, you'll want to cry -- in between which you'll probably sing and dance. The power of music and the power of love mix here for a very "soulful" experience.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Jay B. Lane TOP 1000 REVIEWER on April 8, 2013
Format: Blu-ray
Remember 1968? LBJ is President, Vietnam is still a war zone, North Korea captures the USS Pueblo, and in Australia, it is still legal to remove light-skinned Aboriginal children from their homes, and place them in institutions to teach them the white man's ways. (A practice which was outlawed in 1969/70, this controversial issue is also addressed in both "Australia" and "Rabbit-Proof Fence.")

We are in a remote outpost in Australia. Three girls perform for an itinerant talent scout, played by Chris O'Dowd ("Bridesmaids"). They sing a Merle Haggard song and he joins in on his electronic keyboard, adding some Floyd Kramer piano stylings. He offers them the chance to audition for a USO tour to Southeast Asia to entertain the troops. As soon as they arrive in the city, they look up a former playmate who had been captured and raised by whites.

After an initial culture gap during which the four of them must become re-acquainted AND learn Soul (their new manager knows their audience won't expect Country/Western from a girl group that looks like The Supremes), they are booked and head off for Vietnam.

Based on a popular play by Tony Briggs, whose mother was one of the original "Sapphires," this satisfying sample of the sixties is great on many levels: O'Dowd is very good; each girl has her own distinct personality, issues, and career arc; while the clothes, news, and problems of the times are faithfully portrayed. I loved the big hair, the go-go boots and the Tupperware.

We see what a dangerous challenge a USO tour might become. It's fun to watch as our gals develop stage presence, refine their music and become at ease in the spotlight. In a very welcome postscript, we learn what each young woman achieved after mastering these important skills.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sheryl Fechter on November 4, 2013
Format: Amazon Instant Video
"What a man, what a man, what a man, what a mighty good man" ... This movie is undeniably harmonious with its dynamite cast and blend of powerful music. It teaches a harsh history lesson and supplies a necessary breakout punch of female ambition. In a war torn 1968, the soul singing Sapphires took the stage ...

The story of this all-girl singing group, originally named "The Cummeragunja Reserve Songbirds", starts way back in their childhood. They were brought up to be fighters while singing away their cruel and unfair sorrows. Starting from a place of complete segregation onto the church missions or the Aboriginal reserves, they had little opportunity for flight. These sisters and cousins get it all together to the tune of 'Yellow Bird' then discover their opportunity to fly away during a music contest in town. They have always had the talent, although now need the person to take them there. It is here where they meet Dave Lovelace (Chris O'Dowd - "Pirate Radio", "Bridesmaids") who immediately takes notice of their obvious talent.

Gail (Deborah Mailman), Julie (Jessica Mauboy), and Cynthia (Miranda Tapsell) add their cousin Kay (Shari Sebbens) and are off to perform for the troops in Vietnam along with their new manager, Dave. What is immediately clear in comparison to other movies about singing groups (especially women's) is that this one has a certain gritty edge and a welcomed unpolished shine. These women are real. Realistic looking, sounding, inter-relational, and overall they are extremely endearing. They overcome great hardship to find their soulful voice in history. One that was personally amazing for me to discover.
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